Saturday, 31 March 2012

Dell XPS 15z

Gadgets & Gizmos
 Dell XPS 15z 

Dell have released another addition into its XPS family named Dell XPS 15z, which is just under an inch thick and weighs 2.04 kgs, and still toting an Intel Core i7 processor, Nvidia graphics and impressive speakers. The 15.6-inch notebook is made of aluminum and magnesium alloy.

Maybe Dell are attempting to tempt the MacBook Fans to buy the latest XPS 15z .

The Z series in the XPS family is sleeker than its cousins and very attractive. The XPS 15z is just less an inch thick.

The XPS 15z is perhaps similar to a MacBook Pro especially when the lid is closed. However, the palm rest and hinge design are major differentiators. This notebook is constructed of milled aluminium and the palm rest, magnesium alloy. Even the screen bezel is metal. The XPS 15z feels very solid to the touch. The chassis hardly bends when flexed and the lid’s aluminium backing keeps it from twisting.

Display / Speakers / Keyboard / Trackpad
The XPS 15z has a very thin widescreen display runs full HD 1080p display, and gives a great experience watching high-definition movies, playing games, and split-screen multitasking.
The auto adjusting backlight creates a bright picture on the screen. The XPS 15z screen can be tilted to almost 130 degrees backward – helping you to a certain extent in choosing the ideal viewing position relative to the screen. 

The Dell luxury in the XPS 15z is showcased through the elegant island-style keyboard whish has round bordered square and rectangular keys. Its scalloped keys are worthy of the highest praise, in part because of the backlights that turn on and off by an ambient sensor that detects lighting conditions, a feature that’s present in the XPS family. The typing experience is awesome and gives a true feeling of a luxurious laptop.

The touchpad is spacious, and friction-free. The dedicated mouse buttons are perhaps the softest and quietest ones available.

Monday, 26 March 2012

The Geneva XS portable sound system

Gadgets & Gizmos

The Geneva XS portable sound system

 The Geneva XS portable sound system is a clever little thing.

The digital amplifier and stereo speakers play mid and high frequencies with absolute accuracy. The woofer is capable of producing robust bass response below 80Hz. The Model XS features an integrated digital FM tuner and stereo Bluetooth playback. Music streams wirelessly to the Model XS from any Bluetooth-enabled device, such as iPad, iPhone, and other smartphones and tablets. 

The Geneva XS is the most compact of its range and well-suited for tossing into your luggage. It comes in a hard leather case, which unwraps to expose the sleek hi-fi unit. The unit turns off when the case is shut to save battery life - however, if you run it down, the rechargeable lithium battery means there's no need to lug spare batteries with you.

Establishing a bluetooth connection to the Geneva XS for audio streaming is easy. No need to download software, just a couple of setting changes and its up and running.

It's also quite good as an amplifier for a laptop, so you can get quality sound while watching films in your hotel room.

All ancillary devices such as MP3, TV, and computer can be connected by mini line-in. More importantly for the traveller, the Geneva XS has a digital clock and alarm, as well as a digital FM radio tuner.

The sound quality is very respectable, with tweeters and woofers, and the only real flaw is the Geneva XS display is difficult to read in bright sunshine.

Saturday, 24 March 2012

Acer Aspire S3

Gagets & Gizmos

 Acer Aspire S3

The Ultrabook world is continuing its rise to glory as the Acer Aspire S3 (here with the Core i7 processer inside) runs the thin show at .68 inches at its thickest point.

This is by no means the thinnest notebook on earth, nor is it the Ultrabook with the most impressive set of specifications, but this relatively basic model has a stack of features and a full package that will satisfy any general use owner.

This notebook has a 13.3-inch Active Matrix TFT display at 1366 x 768 pixel resolution, CineCrystal (glossy) and clear as day coupled with Intel HD Graphics 3000 and Dolby Home Theater v4 audio enhancement on built-in stereo speakers – that means good entertainment.

The build is great, and the Acer Aspire S3 is a good looking laptop. It’s quite solid despite its thin build. Acer have managed to cram a lot into the Acer Aspire S3 for a budget price.
The Intel Core i5 processor, combined with 4GB of memory ensures that performance is relatively nippy. 

You should be able to do most things with the Acer Aspire S3, including games. The Acer Aspire S3 isn’t the fastest laptop around but it does the job, although you will notice that some application may take longer to load than others when working at full tilt. 

A couple of USB ports and HDMI at the back are most welcome, particularly on a laptop as thin as the Acer Aspire S3. 

Unfortunately battery life isn’t so hot. The Acer Aspire S3 will last you around 5 hours before you’ll need to think about charging it again, when its competitors are boasting more than seven, and tablets such as the new iPad are boasting of 10 hours.

While the connectivity options are appreciated, their placement, at the back makes using them awkward, particularly when using the USB port. 

The arrow keys are also rather small when playing games. Thankfully the rest of the keys fare better, are well spaced and easy to type on. 

The Acer Aspire S3 feels like a middle of the road laptop. It does everything you need it to do without ever excelling itself. A short battery life is the real kicker, but that’s the price you pay for an ultrabook that costs a lot less than many of its competitors.